The Blogiston Post

Politics, money, and war.

Wednesday, October 8

bits & pieces

According to a short article in Forbes, Willbros Group Inc. has won a subcontract with Kellogg Brown and Root (the Halliburton subsidiary) to install pipeline in Iraq.
Shares of Willbros Group Inc. (nyse: WG) were the top gainer in Tuesday morning trade on the New York Stock Exchange, a day after the contractor disclosed that it had been awarded about $100 million in contracts for work in Iraq and elsewhere.

The Houston company, which serves the oil, gas and power industries, said its Willbros Middle East Inc. subsidiary won a contract from Halliburton Co.'s (nyse: HAL) Kellogg Brown & Root Services unit to install pipelines in Iraq.
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) continues to take on the White House over the handlling of Iraq reconstruction contracts. His most recent letter is to Joshua Bolten, Director, Office of Management and Budget dated September 26. Middle East North Africa Financial Network (MENAFN) has the full text of the letter available.

Dear Mr Bolten,

For the past six months, I have been investigating the activities of Halliburton and Bechtel in Iraq. This has been difficult because of the failure of the White House and federal agencies to respond to my inquiries. In fact, al-though I have written to the Office of Management and Budget, Secretary Rumsfeld, the Secretary of the Army, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Export-Import Bank, and the Army Corps of Engi-neers, only the Corps has responded consistently to my inquiries. As a result, basic facts are not being shared with me or others in Congress about the process by which contracts are being awarded, the scope of specific contract terms, the details of task orders, and the payments being made to Halliburton and Bechtel.

Despite the Administration's refusal to provide information, a picture is now beginning to emerge of waste and gold-plating that is enriching Halliburton and Bechtel while costing the US taxpayer millions and imperiling the goal of Iraqi reconstruction. The problem is this: too much money appears to be going to Halliburton and Bech-tel for too little work and too few opportunities for Iraqis. Already, these two companies have contracts worth $3.14bn from the conflict in Iraq and the reconstruction efforts.
You can also download pdf versions of Rep. Waxman's letters by visiting his website.  


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